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I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?

Latest blog rant – Navigating-the-Realms-of-Fantasy-Or-Who-Knew-Cartography-Could Be So Sexy – about how I love maps in fantasy novels. Do you too? Feel free to post a comment on the Unabashedly Bookish blog!



"There never can be a man so lost as one who is lost in the vast and intricate corridors of his own lonely mind, where none may reach and none may save..." – Isaac Asimov, Pebble in the Sky
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Re: I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?

I did and it was a great column Paul!!
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Re: I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?

I love maps at the beginning of fantasy novels! Sometimes I think it makes the visualization process easier and (IMO) a lot of the best books come with maps :smileyhappy:

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Re: I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?



I would have to agree with you. Maps do make visualizing some of the aspects of the novel(s) a bunches easier. This is expecially true with quite expansive worlds, such as Dune or The Lord of the Rings series. One of the maps that I enjoyed the most was for Star Wars. It gave me a good idea of where the worlds were in relation to one another. Space is hard to map out, but any little thing can help!


Sorry, babbling again. =)



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Re: I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?

[ Edited ]

What I'd like to see is a 'national' map in the front and a local map with each chapter, especially if it's a fantasy-quest.


The first map should use different icons for towns depending on whether they're known to exist, legendary, mythical, or once-were.


Then each chapter map could not only show the characters' progress, there would be penciled-in corrections, additions, and even a few notes ("dead giant's body," "guide's horse eaten by flowers," etc.) which aren't mentioned in the text. Their route through the "trackless forest" should note significant intersections.


Of course, I'd expect the action to get kicked up a notch as they approach "the edge of the world." :smileyhappy:


Oh, and there has to be, on the first map, a large black region marked: "Here be dragyns."

"Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards." -- Robert Heinlein
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Re: I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?

Oh yeah I think maps add a great reference to the story that help you get more into it. For stories that span centuries before and after maps add a great deal of depth to the book. Best example I can think of is the Dragonlance chronicles when they have the maps of Ansalon before the cataclysm and what it looked like after the destuction of Istar. It's amazing how much a fiery mountain being dropped on a city can change the landscape. :smileyhappy:

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Re: I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?

Capuchin I agree that they should also have local maps along with each chapter. A general map of the country or world is great but you miss a lot of the details with small maps covering large areas. I would also love it if some books would include family trees because in long series it's easy to get family relationships confused.

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Re: I Love Maps in Fantasy Novels. Do You Too?

I think having lots of local maps would be a great idea too.  Having the interior layout of a castle or house or compound would be awesome and make it a lot easier to see visualize what is going on.

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